Transition Area Conduct: Obstruction and Interference

By USA Triathlon | Jan. 02, 2014, 6:25 p.m. (ET)

This week’s rule is Article 7.4 — Obstruction and Interference. 

The rule makes it a foul if another person interferes with a participant’s gear or improperly obstructs the forward progress of other participants. Transitions are often quite crowded and some obstruction is inevitable as people pass by one another. A foul may be called if a participant pulls his bike from the rack and then stops in the alley-way to adjust gear or put on a helmet while blocking all others from exiting.  A time penalty would be appropriate in that case. 

A more serious foul would be committed if a participant took another competitor’s helmet or shoes, whether by accident or on purpose, which caused the competitor to be unable to continue.  In that case, a disqualification for the offending athlete would be appropriate. 

Here’s the rule:

7.4 Obstruction and Interference. 
No participant shall impede the forward progress of another participant or interfere with another participant's equipment while in the transition area. Any violation of this section shall result in a variable time penalty, unless such obstruction or interference renders another participant unable to complete the event, in which case the penalty shall be disqualification.

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